Say goodbye to your pre-pandemic lifestyle
By April Blake
It’s almost an understatement to say, “Wow, a lot of things changed in 2020!” But there’s no way to acknowledge the past year plus without the changes that took place. The world as we know it went from a seething pack of humanity, jostling together and spewing their personal droplets everywhere, to a more spaced-out, orderly, and less spittle-covered existence. When you visualized it that way, isn’t the post-COVID world the one we should want to keep up? Yet, everyone has been clamoring for “normal” since things began to change. But the normal of pre-2019 needs to be bid adieu forever. We were much too socially rigid and lackadaisically gross.
Say goodbye to simple things like eating a cake that someone just blew on to extinguish the candles. Now that we stop to think about it, why did we let this happen in the first place?! Spewing wet mouth air over food to share? It’s wild! Handshakes will now also be a little more hesitant, and that’s great, too. You never know who just used their palm to wipe their nose, or who doesn’t wash their hands after using the restroom. But sometimes you do. Now, refusing their handshakes can be blamed on post-pandemic carefulness on your part and won’t reflect your very real disdain to touch that person.
Saying hello to a post-pandemic lifestyle
So many people have shouted from the rooftops about their appreciation for expanded curbside pickup and delivery options that came about from pandemic life. People with kids love it, disabled people love it, everyone else loves it, too. Telehealth falls into the category of good things that came out of the pandemic as well. Anything that increases accessibility for people is positive; it’s sad that it took a global pandemic to force that shift to occur. Now the toothpaste is out of the tube, so to speak, and there’s no putting it back in. We as a society not only want, but need these options to make life easier for a wider range of people.
And speaking of options, we’re all going to have to adjust to a way of life that includes everyone’s ideas on how they should conduct their post-pandemic life. Namely, many people I know say they are going to keep masking in their lives in some form. Now that we have been through this, it won’t be so jarring. But when I was in Seattle in 2019, it felt apocalyptic to see members of the Asian community walking around Chinatown and other parts of the city with medical masks on like it was everyday life. For them, it is. Now it may be for those of us who choose to do so in public as well.
The adjusting will need to come into play for people who see masks as an assault on their existence, when it’s merely a protective measure against germs for the wearer. As we have learned though, you can’t force intelligence or empathy into anyone’s brain. Let’s take a moment to collectively wave our sanitized hands over our heads to the life we knew, and look forward to the lives we can have – the kind that tolerates and accepts a wider range of viewpoints than we did in 2019.